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Lindy’s Best MLB Locks Today: 2 Likes But 1 Mortal Lock

It’s time to continue our Lindy’s Best MLB Locks Today series. For Tuesday’s slate, we focus on three games, but only one of them is a true lock.

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Best MLB Locks Today  – September 5


After a 3-0 day with locks on Monday, it’s impossible for me to disappoint as I’ve only uncovered one lock thus far on Tuesday’s massive 15-game slate. However, perhaps the most fun play of the day concocted in my metaphorical lab hails from this Mariners/Reds game. We’ve got the most homer-friendly park in baseball, a red-hot Seattle squad, and perhaps the biggest unknown on the day’s slate in starting pitcher Connor Phillips.

Phillips, the #6 prospect in the Reds organization according to FanGraphs, is making his major-league debut in this spot. And while we saw some overwhelming stuff from his fastball/curveball combination at the Double-A level where he showed off a 39.1% K and a ridiculous 3.01 xFIP, those numbers regressed heavily in 11 appearance at Triple-A Louisville: a still respectable-but-far-cry-from-Double-A 24.2% K, and whopping-and-oh-so-concerning 5.11 xFIP.

The other massively alarming number that jumps out from Phillips’ Triple-A numbers? A hefty 16.9% walk rate, which would put him in the upper echelon of starters in baseball. In a bad way. You know, because walking dudes north of even a 9% clip is problematic. That means if Tyler Stephenson, noted poor defensive catcher, is behind the dish instead of Luke Maile, there could be havoc awaiting on the base paths for young Phillips if the walks carry over to the big league level.

So in terms of betting, I like embracing the variance of a potential blowup here by combining the Mariners moneyline with the over of the 10 total. I’m pretty vehemently against these types of plays ordinarily, but knowing how depleted Cincinnati’s rotation is, plus the fact they just utilized a majority of their bullpen on Monday to hold down the 6-3 win in the first game of this series, I think the Mariners correlate nicely with the over.

Plus, Mariners starter Bryce Miller should give up a run or two himself considering the 4.48 xERA, 43.2% hard hit and 10.7% barrel that don’t exactly bode well for a game in Great American Smallpark. Still, the Mariners have more in the lineup and the less strained pen from top-to-bottom. And with the moneyline at -155 on DraftKings compared to north of -170 everywhere else entering Tuesday, that’s the prime destination to combined them with the over of 10.

Best MLB Locks Today PLAY: SEA ML + OVER 10 (LIKE)

White Sox-Royals

Similar to Monday in Wrigley where I backed the pitching profiles of Logan Webb and Justin Steele to overcome amazing hitting conditions, I’m running that trick back on Tuesday in Kansas City. First pitch is expected to be in the mid 90’s with humidity hovering around 55%. In other words, if you’re going to this game, may I suggest splurging for an air-conditioned box?

Anyways, we’ve got a pair of pitchers on the bump in Dylan Cease for the White Sox and Brady Singer for the Royals, both of whom I’m higher on than the public consensus. Cease is the easier sell: a .373 xSLG, 26.5% K and 2.9 WAR all suggest an arm who couldn’t possibly be on this putrid White Sox staff. Plus, he sports an unlucky .334 BABIP and 4.13 xERA despite a 4.91 ERA, suggesting positive regression is in store. And worse pitchers than Cease have experienced good bit of fortune against this Royals squad that yes, we’ve backed a lot of late, but is still dead-last in baseball versus right-handed pitching with just an 82 wRC+.

As for Singer, it’s been a downright dreadful ‘23 season despite lofty expectations coming off a 3.23 ERA and 24.2% K in ‘22. He’s been tattooed to the tune of a 49.3% hard hit rate and is striking out just 19.9% of batters, both career worsts by a landslide. But, there is hope here, friends: the White Sox are tied with the Royals for that league-worst 82 wRC+ against right-handed pitching this season, and are most likely to be without their best hitter, Luis Robert Jr., who is nursing a quad injury and hasn’t suited up since Friday. And despite a bit of a lefty problem for Singer giving up a .193 xISO to that handedness this season, there are legitimately zero lefties in this White Sox lineup to be remotely scared of.

So crazy as it might sound, there are some 9.5’s posted at Caesars and BetMGM that I think are legitimate values. Nothing to jam in these hot-and-gusty conditions by any means, but think the chances that either Cease or Singer (or both) have strong games against these subpar lineups is enough to make the under of 9.5 pop for me on Tuesday.

Best MLB Locks Today PLAY: UNDER 9.5 (LIKE)


We’ve arrived at the one lock of the day thus far. You know, because when you can back a starting pitcher with a 1-7 record and cringeworthy 6.21 ERA as a massive home favorite, you just gotta do it.

But do it I shall, friends, and you should as well with Brandon Pfaadt and the Arizona Diamondbacks taking on Kyle Freeland and the Colorado Rockies. And starting with Pfaadt, it’s so hard to mine out anything meaningful from young pitchers who come up through the Pacific Coast League Triple-A environment to the big-league level. That’s because 1) their stats are always inflated due to horrific pitching stadiums with a majority being affected by heat and altitude, and 2) the strong farm systems of West Coast teams like the Giants, Dodgers, etc.

But that’s where the Brandon Pfaadt Experience makes no sense: he’s been dynamite at Triple-A Reno, the most difficult of all PCL ballparks to be remotely competent in due to extreme altitude and park factors. He’s had just a 3.71 ERA in ‘23 in 60.2 innings at Reno, which is actually up from his mind-blowing 2.63 ERA in 61.2 innings in ‘22.

So why has he struggled so mightily at the big league level? Well, facing the Dodgers twice, the Giants twice, the Padres twice, as well as the Rangers, Marlins, Red Sox, Rays, and Mariners to make up 11 of his 14 MLB starts is not what I would call “ideal”. But also, the 35.8% GB rate at Triple-A has actually decreased to 31.8% at the big league level, a problematic number when you factor in his 45.7% hard hit and .482 xSLG.

All of that considered, I am 100% backing him here in this spot based on some recent numbers. If you throw away the road Dodgers outing in his last outing, Pfaadt has allowed only five runs in his previous 18 innings. He also had given up just one long ball in his last four starts leading into that brutal Dodgers spot. And he faces a Rockies squad that falls into a three-way tie with the White Sox and Royals for worst in baseball versus right-handed pitching, sporting just an 82 wRC+.

As for Rockies southpaw starter Freeland, he’s inexplicably been worse on the road this season than in the hitter-friendly confines of his home park of Coors Field: a .303 BA and 5.32 ERA allowed on the road versus a .292 BA and 5.06 ERA at home in nearly identical sample sizes is just wild (note: this split does not exist for his career numbers). He’s also striking out just 14.5% of batters and carries a .360 xwOBA, which is a more pressing issue than the home/road splits because they are truly, truly horrendous numbers.

And to round it all out, we’re getting a fantastic price on the Diamondbacks runline here if you take the time to shop for the best odds. At +112 over on FanDuel Sportsbook, we’re getting a 12-cent boost compared to every other book that currently has ARI -1.5 at even money. Now, I have hope the public won’t jam Arizona the way they might with a more known quantity like Zac Gallen or Merrill Kelly on the mound against this measly Rockies squad, meaning the odds have a chance of staying in this range all the way up to first pitch. But don’t take any chances: lock in anything with a plus sign attached to it on ARI -1.5 as soon as you hear (err, read) this, and let’s keep this lock streak humming along.

Best MLB Locks Today PLAY: ARI -1.5 (LOCK)

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